Multiple anonymous officials quoted a classified U.S. intelligence report delivered to the White House which assured China manipulated public reporting on cases and deaths, even going as far as stating the released numbers are fake.
On April 17th China increased the number of deaths attributed to Covid-19 in Wuhan by 50%. They indicated previous numbers were accidentally under reported because their reporting system was overwhelmed during the peak of the virus. The charge of messaged numbers seems to be backed up by reports that 5000 funeral urns were delivered to one funeral home after the crisis had abated.
The outbreak began in China’s Hubei province in late 2019, but the country has publicly reported only about 82,000 cases and 3,300 deaths, according to data compiled by Johns Hopkins University.
“The reality is that we could have been better off if China had been more forthcoming,” Vice President Mike Pence said Wednesday on CNN.
While Deborah Birx, the State Department immunologist advising the White House on its response to the outbreak, said Tuesday “The medical community made — interpreted the Chinese data as: This was serious but smaller than anyone expected,” she said at a news conference on Tuesday. “Because I think probably we were missing a significant amount of the data, now that what we see happened to Italy and see what happened to Spain.”
This all leads to several interesting questions:
- Will we ever find out what truly happened in China?
- If China is found to have purposely under-reported (or false reporting) should they face sanctions or fines?
What do you think?